The recent High Court judgment allowing a person to use curtains on his vehicle windows on the health grounds has divided the legal experts.
While some cheered the judgment, others said it fell foul of the Supreme Court verdict banning use of sun control film on vehicles.
The Supreme Court had passed the judgment relying on the Rule 100 (2) of the Motor Vehicle Rules. The rule says that Visual Light Transmission (VLT) of safety glasses windscreen (front and rear) should be 70 per cent VLT and side glasses 40 per cent.
The apex court held that the use of these black sun control film had aided criminals. The Supreme Court also took into consideration the unanimous view of various police authorities in Calcutta, Tamil Nadu and Delhi, and the Ministry of Home Affairs that use of black films on vehicles jeopardized the security and safety interests of the State and public at large. This had helped the criminals to escape from the eyes of the police after committing crimes such as sexual assault on women, robberies, kidnapping, etc.
Kaleeswaram Raj, High Court lawyer and legal commentator said the verdict recognised the individual right of the citizen. The curtain could be easily taken off unlike the sun control films on vehicles. Therefore, use of curtain would not affect the security.
The apex court had held that even if some individual interests were likely to suffer, such individual or private interests must give in to the larger public interest. It was the duty of all citizens to comply with the law.
A senior high court lawyer said the Supreme Court had issued the directive to ensure safety and security of the State. The real goal behind the verdict was to prevent criminal activities. If curtains were used; it would block the visibility.